By Ian Dipple Friday 06 September 2013 Updated: 06/09 13:47
BOROUGH council bosses are facing having to make another £400,000 in savings after it was revealed the scale of the Government’s latest round of funding cuts were deeper than expected.
It means by 2015 Redditch Borough Council will be delivering services with less than half of the government cash it received in 2010.
Chancellor George Osborne announced in May local government funding would reduce by ten per cent in 2015/16 but analysis by the Local Government Association (LGA) shows many councils will be facing a real terms cut of closer to 15 per cent.
Although the figures are yet to be confirmed, Redditch Borough Council is currently facing a drop of 15.1 per cent, increasing the amount it had planned to save by 2015 from £1.5million to £1.9million.
Chief executive Kevin Dicks said: “Fortunately Redditch Borough Council is far better placed to survive this further round of government cuts than many authorities, through its proactive and innovative shared service approach with Bromsgrove District Council and others.
“Despite this the level of reductions makes balancing the books increasingly challenging, and the council will continue its ground-breaking transformation work to maximise the improvements to services for citizens and make savings. I believe it is becoming imperative other partners and local organisations are more proactive in their approach to this transformation.”
According to the LGA Worcestershire County Council is facing a drop between 2014/15 and 2015/16 of 13 per cent - some £16.8million.
Part of the loss is due to changes in the way councils get money for building new homes. Council bosses say they are still working through the implications and more information would be released in the Autumn, but it is likely to increase the need for more savings which have already risen from £14million to at least £20million a year up to 2017. The council has already trimmed £80million from its budget since 2010 through its BOLD programme.
County council leader Adrian Hardman said the government grant represented just 25 per cent of their finance and while the reduction was bigger than expected it was in line with their thinking.
“Of more concern to me is the rising service level demands in the number of children we’re taking into care and increasing demographic pressure,” he said.
“This is why delivering our corporate plan Future Fit becomes so important. It is set by the public and we will continue to be proactive in finding out what is important to them both now and in the future.”
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